Grants Pass in Josephine County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
Mormon Sugar Beet Factory Site
The sugar factory, though short lived, brought considerable attention and growth to the Rogue Valley. It provided employment for more than 150 people in its construction and operation. Over 700,000 bricks were supplied by a local brick maker, C.E. Woolfolk. Area ranches fattened their cattle on beet pulp, and nearby lime quarry was kept busy. On October 24, 1916, and open house and gala celebration, known as "Sugar Day," marked the first day of its operation. The event was covered by Pathe News, the Grants Pass Daily Courier, and other regional newspapers. Early in 1917, a branch of the L.D.S. Church, with 38 members, was organized in Grants Pass by Melvin
At least 5,000 acres of land with sufficient irrigation were needed to make the venture a success. Because the full amount of land and water could not be secured, the project was unable to survive its second year. The entire operation was dismantled and moved to Toppenish, Washington. By the end of 1918, all that remained of the Mormon Sugar Beet Factory was a pile of broken bricks and its huge cement foundations, part of which still exists under the asphalt parking lot of the Fruitdale Grange. The Grange acquired a portion of the factory property in May of 1930 and joined with the Josephine Company-Grants Pass Camp of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers in preserving this historical site.
Erected 1999 by Josephine Company-Grants Pass Camp. (Marker Number 524.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Industry & Commerce. In addition, it is included in the Daughters of Utah Pioneers series list. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1930.
Location. 42° 25.43′ N, 123° 19.213′ W. Marker is in Grants Pass, Oregon, in Josephine County. Marker is at the intersection of Parkdale Drive and Rogue River Hwy (U.S. 66) on Parkdale DriveTouch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Grants Pass OR 97527, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Riverside Park Memorial Flagpole (approx. half a mile away); Riverside Park War Memorial (approx. half a mile away); Josephine County Peace Memorial (approx. half a mile away); Union Veterans of the Civil War (approx. 0.6 miles away); Memorial to Our Fathers (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Perkinsville Ferry (approx. ¾ mile away); The First Brick Building in Grants Pass (approx. 1.1 miles away); Fort Vannoy (approx. 5.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Grants Pass.
More about this marker. Marker is located in front of the Fruitdale Grange Hall. The bricks that make up the monument are from the original beet factory.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 15, 2018. It was originally submitted on January 11, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. This page has been viewed 179 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 11, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.